Appointment of Darnell M. Hunt as Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost

Campus UpdateFaculty and Staff

Chancellor Block sent the following message to the UCLA Bruin Community.

Dear Bruin Community:

I am delighted to announce that Darnell M. Hunt — currently dean of UCLA’s Division of Social Sciences and professor of sociology and African American studies — will be our next executive vice chancellor and provost (EVCP). A longtime campus leader widely respected for his vision, diligence, fairness and commitment to inclusive excellence, Dean Hunt will bring considerable skills, knowledge and experience to his new role as UCLA’s chief academic officer, and I am certain that his service will continue to elevate our great institution. He will begin this new role on September 1, 2022.

Dean Hunt has been a leading figure at UCLA for more than two decades. After beginning his academic career on the sociology faculty at USC, he joined our institution in 2001 as professor of sociology and director of the Ralph J. Bunche Center for African American Studies. He led the Bunche Center from 2001 to 2017, and additionally served as chair of the Department of Sociology from 2015 to 2017, before being named dean of the Division of Social Sciences. As dean for the past five years, he has focused on supporting and elevating the social sciences and extending their reach across the academy and into the community: Under his leadership, the division expanded and continued to diversify its world-class faculty; established the Barbra Streisand Center for the Future of Women and the UCLA Bedari Kindness Institute; renamed the Downtown Labor Center after UCLA lecturer, civil rights icon and UCLA Medal recipient Rev. James Lawson Jr.; launched the “Big Data” and Society initiative and LA Social Science, an interactive e-forum designed to showcase research and engaged scholarship and facilitate a dialogue with external stakeholders; and, in conjunction with the Division of Humanities, secured a multi-year grant from the Mellon Foundation to support hiring and curricula with a focus on social justice.

Dean Hunt has written extensively about issues related to race, media and culture, including four books and numerous articles for both academic journals and news outlets. While his research expertise is wide ranging, he has developed a particular focus on issues of access and diversity in the entertainment industry. Since 2014, he has been the lead author of UCLA’s celebrated Hollywood Diversity Report, providing comprehensive analyses of the employment of women and people of color in front of and behind the camera in film and television. A sought-after commentator in news media on questions of media and race, he has also served on panel discussions sponsored by the Federal Communications Commission, the United Nations, the Congressional Black Caucus, numerous colleges and universities and other organizations. The findings of his research studies have been reported in thousands of print, radio, broadcast and online media outlets throughout the United States and abroad. In 2010, he was listed among Ebony magazine’s “Power 150 Academia” for his community-engaged scholarship.

Dean Hunt is a member of the American Sociological Association, the Association of Black Sociologists and the Council of Colleges of Arts and Sciences. He has served as a member of the Los Angeles County Commission on Human Relations Academic Advisory Board and as a staff researcher for the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights’ hearings on the 1992 Los Angeles civil disturbances. He currently serves as a member of the Chancellor’s Council on the Arts, the Campus IT Steering Committee and the Faculty Forward Initiative task force at UCLA, and is also a member of the UC Press Board of Directors. In addition, he has served on numerous campus and UC committees including the Committee on Diversity and Equal Opportunity, the Committee on Undergraduate Admissions and Relations with Schools (chair), the Classroom Advisory Committee, the Civic Engagement Task Force (chair), and the UC Board of Admissions and Relations with Schools, and was the recipient of the UCLA Academic Senate’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Award in 2011. He earned his A.B. in journalism at the University of Southern California, his M.B.A. at Georgetown University, and his M.A. and Ph.D. in sociology here at UCLA.

I would like to thank the EVCP search/advisory committee members for their hard work in assembling a remarkable pool of candidates and for their roles in recruiting Dean Hunt for this position. Roger Wakimoto, vice chancellor for research and creative activities and professor of atmospheric and oceanic sciences, was the committee chair. Other members included:

  • Leisy J. Abrego – professor and chair, César E. Chávez Department of Chicana/o and Central American Studies
  • Onyebuchi A. Arah – professor of epidemiology and associate dean, UCLA Graduate Division
  • S. Thomas Carmichael – professor and chair of the Department of Neurology and Frances Stark Chair
  • Jessica Cattelino – professor of anthropology and chair of the UCLA Academic Senate
  • Christina A. Christie – Wasserman Dean of the School of Education and Information Studies and professor of education
  • Jody E. Kreiman – professor of head and neck surgery and of linguistics and past chair of the UCLA Academic Senate
  • Marilyn N. Raphael – professor of geography and director of the Institute of the Environment and Sustainability
  • Vivek Shetty – professor of dentistry and bioengineering
  • Elizabeth H. Simmons – executive vice chancellor and distinguished professor of physics, UCSD
  • Shannon Speed – professor of gender studies and anthropology, and director of the American Indian Studies Center
  • David K. Yoo – vice provost of the Institute of American Cultures, professor of Asian American studies and history, and member of the Chancellor’s Council on the Arts

I also wish to recognize and express my utmost gratitude to Michael Levine for serving as interim executive vice chancellor and provost since last October, and for his longstanding commitment and many contributions to UCLA. Interim EVCP Levine took up this position during a challenging period, and through it all he has remained a dedicated steward of our academic enterprise. He will return to his role as vice chancellor for academic personnel in September.

Given Dean Hunt’s UCLA roots, coupled with his administrative experience and compelling vision for UCLA, I am confident that he will provide extraordinary leadership in this new role. I greatly look forward to working with him and the campus community to advance our shared goals.

Please join me in offering heartfelt congratulations to Darnell and welcoming him as executive vice chancellor and provost this fall.


  • Gene D. BlockChancellor